Archive by Author

Random Memories of Germany-Our Favorite Castles Part 4

27 Sep

SUNDAY MEMORIES

Judy Wills

Herrenchiemsee

1969 – our trip to Bavaria – Herrenchiemsee Palace

The Writing Room

In THE WRITING ROOM, the paintings above the doors depict scenes of campaigns fought under Louis XIV.  The large portrait is of Louis XV.  “The large roll-top desk is a copy made in Paris in 1884, where the famous desk of Louis XV at the Louvre served as a model.”

The Blue Salon

THE BLUE SALON is an example of decorating with mirrors.  “The mirrors were to give an illusion of an indefinite flight of rooms….On the mantle-piece in Meissen porcelain is a marble statuette of Jupiter and flower-decorated candelabras of Meissen porcelain.”  Again, the wood-inlay floor is just amazing!

The Dining Room

THE DINING ROOM is in the shape of an oval.  Once again, lots of French influence in the decorations of the room – including stucco cupids.  “The magic table…an allusion made to a fairy tale by Grimm – allowed the King, as at Linderhof, to take his meals all by himself.”  Again, the table “disappeared” down into the kitchen below, then filled with food, and then hoisted back to the dining room for the king to take his meal…alone.  Poor man…he must have been very lonely.

~~~~~~~~~~To Be Continued~~~~~~~~~~

Judy is living in Central Florida with her retired U.S. Air Force husband of 50+ years. Born in Dallas, Texas, she grew up in the Southwestern United States.She met her husband at their church, where he was attending the university in her town. After college and seminary, he entered the Air Force, and their adventures began.They lived in eight of our United States, and spent six years in Europe, where their oldest daughter was born. She was a stay-at-home mom for many years .

  Judy has always been involved with music, both playing the piano and singing. Always interested in exercise, she was an aerobic dancing instructor, as well as a piano teacher for many years, and continues to faithfully exercise at home.

After moving to Central Florida, she served as a church secretary for nearly nine years.Her main hobby at this point in time is scanning pictures and 35mm slides into the computer. She also enjoys scrapbooking.She and her husband have two married daughters and four grandchildren, including grandtwins as well as a great-grandson. She and her husband enjoy the Disney parks as often as possible.

Random Memories of Germany- Our Favorite Castles

20 Sep

HERRENCHIEMSEE – PART 3

1969 – our trip to Bavaria – Herrenchiemsee Palace

The Great Hall of Mirrors

THE GREAT HALL OF MIRRORS was always a place of great beauty to us.  While it was definitely designed after the Versailles Hall of Mirrors, it was “newer” than Versailles, of course, and so felt different to us. 

1969 – our trip to Bavaria.  Fred’s mother is on the left in the green hat,

looking at the ceiling

“For the Hall of Mirrors of Herrenchiemsee, the King demanded a true-to-scale copy [of Versailles], which was planned and built in 1879-1881.  It had a length of 98 meters and is longer than the Versailles model….the frame decoration, which in Versailles is only painted, is carried out here in gilded stucco ornaments…the pictures occasionally are extended three-dimensionally in stucco.”

The Hall of War

In THE HALL OF WAR, “the walls are covered with multicolored marble stucco.  Above the mantelpiece, an oval bas-relief in stucco: ‘Louis XIV on horseback’.”

The Bedchamber

THE BEDCHAMBER, I am assuming, was not the State Bedchamber, but the bedroom for the king in his apartment in the palace.  Please notice the blue glass globe in front of the bed – it was used as night illumination for the king.  I guess he needed a night light, just as our children do in this day and age.  Please notice the wood-inlay floors.  Wow!

~~~~~~~~~~To Be Continued~~~~~~~~~~

Judy is living in Central Florida with her retired U.S. Air Force husband of 50+ years. Born in Dallas, Texas, she grew up in the Southwestern United States.She met her husband at their church, where he was attending the university in her town. After college and seminary, he entered the Air Force, and their adventures began.They lived in eight of our United States, and spent six years in Europe, where their oldest daughter was born. She was a stay-at-home mom for many years .

  Judy has always been involved with music, both playing the piano and singing. Always interested in exercise, she was an aerobic dancing instructor, as well as a piano teacher for many years, and continues to faithfully exercise at home.

After moving to Central Florida, she served as a church secretary for nearly nine years.Her main hobby at this point in time is scanning pictures and 35mm slides into the computer. She also enjoys scrapbooking.She and her husband have two married daughters and four grandchildren, including grandtwins as well as a great-grandson. She and her husband enjoy the Disney parks as often as possible.

Random Memories of Germany- Our Favorite Castles

13 Sep

Herrenchiemsee-Part 2

SUNDAY MEMORIES

Judy Wills

I mentioned earlier that Herrenchiemsee was “unfinished” at Ludwig’s death.  But the brochure states: “It would be wrong to call Herrenchiemsee Palace ‘unfinished’ in the usual sense of the word; even in the construction schedule of 1878, no other rooms are planned for the interior than those which we see complete today.  For conjuring up the spirit of absolute monarchy, the central rooms of Versailles are indeed sufficient.”

Herrenchiemsee was built in the grand style of Versailles, with many of the rooms built similarly to Versailles.  However, during the French Revolution, many of the artifacts, furniture and furnishings of Versailles were lost or destroyed.  Therefore, when Ludwig began building Herrenchiemsee, he had no “Versailles” models to work from.  Therefore, much of the furnishings in Herrenchiemsee are original designs.  And while they were original creations, they were often corrected and amended by the king in his own handwriting.

The State Staircase

THE STATE STAIRCASE was modeled on the Versailles Ambassadors’ Staircase.  Multicolored marble and stucco marble-clad walls follows exactly the Versailles model, shown in existing plans and engravings.

The First Antechamber

In THE FIRST ANTECHAMBER, the inlaid paintings show scenes from court life and the military campaigns of Louis XIV of France.  

The Second Antechamber

In THE SECOND ANTECHAMBER (so-called “bull’s eye hall”) are paintings of Louis XIV, as well as, in the center of the hall, a bronze equestrian statuette of Louis XIV.

The State Bedchamber

THE STATE BEDCHAMBER was never used by Ludwig, but represents a highlight of majestic appointments, and was the first room completed in the palace, and turned over to the King on September 18, 1881.  “In the ceiling fresco Phoebus Apollo has the facial features of Louis XIV.”

The Council Chamber

THE COUNCIL CHAMBER has a portrait of Louis XIV and four painting above the door, showing diplomatic successes of the Sun King.  Lots of gold overlay in this room.

~~~~~~~~~~To Be Continued~~~~~~~~~~

Judy is living in Central Florida with her retired U.S. Air Force husband of 50+ years. Born in Dallas, Texas, she grew up in the Southwestern United States.She met her husband at their church, where he was attending the university in her town. After college and seminary, he entered the Air Force, and their adventures began.They lived in eight of our United States, and spent six years in Europe, where their oldest daughter was born. She was a stay-at-home mom for many years .

  Judy has always been involved with music, both playing the piano and singing. Always interested in exercise, she was an aerobic dancing instructor, as well as a piano teacher for many years, and continues to faithfully exercise at home.

After moving to Central Florida, she served as a church secretary for nearly nine years.Her main hobby at this point in time is scanning pictures and 35mm slides into the computer. She also enjoys scrapbooking.She and her husband have two married daughters and four grandchildren, including grandtwins as well as a great-grandson. She and her husband enjoy the Disney parks as often as possible.

RANDOM MEMORIES OF GERMANY -OUR FAVORITE CASTLES

6 Sep

HERRENCHIEMSEE – PART 1

SUNDAY MEMORIES

Judy Wills

As with last time’s post, I want to preface this with a statement that a lot of what information and pictures I am presenting is from pamphlets we purchased when we toured Herrenchiemsee all those years ago.  Some are our own observations and pictures, but some of the more “technical” information is gleaned from those pamphlets. So…..

1969 – our trip to Bavaria – Herrenchiemsee Palace

Herrenchiemsee was the last of the three main castles that Ludwig II King of Bavaria had built.  Neuschwanstein was the first built, (1869-1886) taking 17 years to complete, and was not completely finished at his death in 1886.  Linderhof only took four years to build (1876-1878).  And the final castle, Herrenchiemsee, was eight years in the building, 1878-1886.  It was not completed at the time of Ludwig’s death in 1886, under mysterious circumstances.

Aerial view of the palace and grounds

I think that Ludwig was a dreamer at heart.  While he was a great friend and admirer of composer Richard Wagner, I think he had a bit of hero worship in King Louis XIV of France, who fashioned himself as the Sun King. 

Credit Google Search – Louis XIV – Portrait by Hyacinthe Rigaud, 1701

Ludwig II King of Bavaria – 1887 portrait by Gabriel Schachinger

In the brochure we purchased at the castle, it stated that “For King Ludwig II, the Sun King was the absolute embodiment of monarchy.”  Ludwig studied everything he could about Louis and Versailles, eventually visiting France and the palace.  That inspired him to try to build a “New Versailles.”  He erected Herrenchiemsee “as a monument to the monarchy.”  It goes on to say it was a monument, not a building to be lived in.

~~~~~~~~~~To Be Continued~~~~~~~~~~

Judy is living in Central Florida with her retired U.S. Air Force husband of 50+ years. Born in Dallas, Texas, she grew up in the Southwestern United States.She met her husband at their church, where he was attending the university in her town. After college and seminary, he entered the Air Force, and their adventures began.They lived in eight of our United States, and spent six years in Europe, where their oldest daughter was born. She was a stay-at-home mom for many years .

  Judy has always been involved with music, both playing the piano and singing. Always interested in exercise, she was an aerobic dancing instructor, as well as a piano teacher for many years, and continues to faithfully exercise at home.

After moving to Central Florida, she served as a church secretary for nearly nine years.Her main hobby at this point in time is scanning pictures and 35mm slides into the computer. She also enjoys scrapbooking.She and her husband have two married daughters and four grandchildren, including grandtwins as well as a great-grandson. She and her husband enjoy the Disney parks as often as possible.

Random Memories of Germany-Our Favorite Castles

30 Aug

Neuschwanstein- Part 3

SUNDAY MEMORIES

Judy Wills

Due to its secluded location, the palace survived the destruction of two World Wars. Until 1944, it served as a depot for Nazi plunder that was taken from France by the Reichsleiter Rosenberg Institute for the Occupied Territories, a suborganization of the Nazi Party.  The castle was used to catalogue the works of arts. (After World War II 39 photo albums were found in the palace documenting the scale of the art seizures. The albums are now stored in the United States National Archives.)

In April 1945, the SS considered blowing up the palace to prevent the building itself and the artwork it contained from falling to the enemy. The plan was not realized by the SS-Gruppenführer who had been assigned the task, however, and at the end of the war the palace was surrendered undamaged to representatives of the Allied forces. Thereafter the Bavarian archives used some of the rooms as a provisional store for salvaged archivalia, as the premises in Munich had been bombed.

Personally, I am so thankful that this wonderful castle was not destroyed.

While Neuschwanstein’s look is that of a medieval castle, it was equipped inside with state of the art technology at that time.  For example on every floor of the castle there were toilets with an automatic flushing system, as well as others – heating, etc.

The king used an electric bell system to summon his servants and adjutants. On the third and fourth floors there were even telephones. Meals did not have to be laboriously carried upstairs:  for this purpose there was a lift.

The Dining Room – Ludwig ate alone

All in all, and unfortunately, the King lived only a short time in this castle – much less than one year.

The Throne Room

My husband, Fred, tells me that in 1949, when he was just a boy, he and his family were living in Italy.  They made a trip to Germany and visited Neuschwanstein castle.  At that time, they were able to drive up the hill, right up to the “front door” of the castle.  (That isn’t allowed now – one must either walk up the hill, or be taken by a horse-drawn carriage)   Fred said that they were able to roam through the castle and investigate everywhere they wanted to go, with a guide to only point out the highlights.  That would have been a wonderful experience!  We were just thrilled, all those years later, just to have the opportunity to look through the castle with a guide and in a group.  Times have changed.

~~~~~~~~~~To Be Continued~~~~~~~~~~

Judy is living in Central Florida with her retired U.S. Air Force husband of 50+ years. Born in Dallas, Texas, she grew up in the Southwestern United States.She met her husband at their church, where he was attending the university in her town. After college and seminary, he entered the Air Force, and their adventures began.They lived in eight of our United States, and spent six years in Europe, where their oldest daughter was born. She was a stay-at-home mom for many years .

  Judy has always been involved with music, both playing the piano and singing. Always interested in exercise, she was an aerobic dancing instructor, as well as a piano teacher for many years, and continues to faithfully exercise at home.

After moving to Central Florida, she served as a church secretary for nearly nine years.Her main hobby at this point in time is scanning pictures and 35mm slides into the computer. She also enjoys scrapbooking.She and her husband have two married daughters and four grandchildren, including grandtwins as well as a great-grandson. She and her husband enjoy the Disney parks as often as possible.

Random Memories of Germany- Our Favorite Castles Part 2

23 Aug

SUNDAY MEMORIES

Judy Wills

As I mentioned in a previous post about Linderhof, Ludwig was a great friend of Richard Wagner, composer.  Many, many of the paintings in Newschwanstein deal with different scenes in Wagner’s operas.  

1875 – Richard Wagner

There is only one room in the castle that didn’t have a wooden ceiling – and it was a painting in his dressing room by Eduard Ille.

The Dressing Room – notice the ceiling – not wood

Personally, I am enthralled with the wooden ceilings!  But then, you might remember my post about wood inlay and how much I enjoy the workmanship that goes into that artistry.  So all the woodwork in this castle appealed to me greatly.

Also in the dressing room is a “pottery toilet-set by Mettlach majolica ware (by Villeroy and Boch – some of our favorite).”  There is iron-work on all the doors in the castle, but it is reported that the iron-work on the door between the living room and the dressing room is probably the finest of the whole castle.  The detail in the iron-work is impressive.

If you remember my post from August 9, 2020, you will see the picture of the King’s bedroom in Linderhof.  It is magnificent.  However, the King’s bedroom in Neuschwanstein is not nearly as elaborate as the one in Linderhof.

The Kings Bedroom at Neuschwanstein

However, it is magnificent in it’s own right.  As I said – lots of wood – paneling and ceiling.  Also, the Bavarian blue was Ludwig’s favorite color, and you will see it here in the drapes and bedspread.  Not so sure about that column in the middle of the room – that might be a head-knocker in the middle of the night!

Neuschwanstein was still incomplete when Ludwig II died in 1886. The King never intended to make the palace accessible to the public.  However, no more than six weeks after the King’s death, the Prince-Regent Luitpold ordered the palace opened to paying visitors. 

~~~~~~~~~~To Be Continued~~~~~~~~~~

Judy is living in Central Florida with her retired U.S. Air Force husband of 50+ years. Born in Dallas, Texas, she grew up in the Southwestern United States.She met her husband at their church, where he was attending the university in her town. After college and seminary, he entered the Air Force, and their adventures began.They lived in eight of our United States, and spent six years in Europe, where their oldest daughter was born. She was a stay-at-home mom for many years .

  Judy has always been involved with music, both playing the piano and singing. Always interested in exercise, she was an aerobic dancing instructor, as well as a piano teacher for many years, and continues to faithfully exercise at home.

After moving to Central Florida, she served as a church secretary for nearly nine years.Her main hobby at this point in time is scanning pictures and 35mm slides into the computer. She also enjoys scrapbooking.She and her husband have two married daughters and four grandchildren, including grandtwins as well as a great-grandson. She and her husband enjoy the Disney parks as often as possible.

Random Memories of Germany-Our Favorite Castles

16 Aug

SUNDAY MEMORIES

Judy Wills

As I mentioned last time, we visited quite a few castles while in Germany – and some in other countries.  But I think our favorites were the ones built by Ludwig II – named “Mad King Ludwig” by many.  But he was a great castle-builder!

King Ludwig II of Bavaria

I want to preface this post with a statement that a lot of what information and pictures I am presenting is from pamphlets we purchased when we toured Neuschwanstein all those years ago.  Some are our own observations and pictures, but some of the more “technical” information is gleaned from those pamphlets, and a few items from Wikipedia and Google search.  So…..

King Ludwig II of Bavaria, is the king who built these three castles.  Neuschwanstein was the first built, (1869-1886) taking 17 years to complete, and was not completely finished at his death in 1886.  Linderhof only took four years to build (1876-1878).  And the final castle, Herrenchiemsee, was eight years in the building, 1878-1886.  It was not completed at the time of Ludwig’s death in 1886, under mysterious circumstances.

I think the most impressive of all Ludwig’s castles, is Neuschwanstein Castle (New Swan Castle), in Bavaria – at least to me.  We visited it many times during the six years we lived in Germany.  We were fortunate, during our first tour of duty (1967-1970) that when we toured the castle, we were allowed to enter places that are now off-limits to tourists.

1968 – from the walking path

1982 – walking up to the castle

1982 – an interesting view of the castle

I have researched the information on the castle, but have not found any mention of what we were told when we first visited – that it was built as a “soldier’s castle.”  I have seen instances of it being called a “Knight’s Castle” so that might mean the same thing.  It is a bit austere compared to Linderhof (see my previous post of August 9, 2020), but I found it fascinating!  Lots of wood and marble, much more space than Linderhof.

Not having lived in a really cold climate, I was amazed at the heating system there. As early as 1884, the castle was centrally heated by warm air from the cellar and the ground floor.  Hot air flowed through air-shafts to the rooms of the upper stories.  Near the kitchen were four big stoves for heating the entire castle, but they were in use only in autumn and spring.  Therefore, in each room there was a tiled stove, used for heating the rooms.  Beautifully done.

The kitchen was quite modern for that time.  Besides hot and cold running water, a grill and fully automatic turning spits for game and poultry.  Rising hot air in the chimney turned a turbine in a broad tube above the spit, and this movement operated the spit over a gear (an invention by Leonardo da Vinci).  Amazing

The Kitchen

There was hot and cold running water throughout the castle.  It was supplied by a source emerging 600 feet above the castle, so that its natural pressure is sufficient to supply the whole castle – even its uppermost rooms, with water.

~~~~~~~~~~To Be Continued~~~~~~~~~~

Judy is living in Central Florida with her retired U.S. Air Force husband of 50+ years. Born in Dallas, Texas, she grew up in the Southwestern United States.She met her husband at their church, where he was attending the university in her town. After college and seminary, he entered the Air Force, and their adventures began.They lived in eight of our United States, and spent six years in Europe, where their oldest daughter was born. She was a stay-at-home mom for many years .

  Judy has always been involved with music, both playing the piano and singing. Always interested in exercise, she was an aerobic dancing instructor, as well as a piano teacher for many years, and continues to faithfully exercise at home.

After moving to Central Florida, she served as a church secretary for nearly nine years.Her main hobby at this point in time is scanning pictures and 35mm slides into the computer. She also enjoys scrapbooking.She and her husband have two married daughters and four grandchildren, including grandtwins as well as a great-grandson. She and her husband enjoy the Disney parks as often as possible.

Random Memories of Germany- Our Favorite Castles

9 Aug

SUNDAY MEMORIES

Judy Wills

LINDERHOF

1968 – on our trip to Bavaria

We visited quite a few castles while in Germany – and some in other countries.  But I think our favorites were the ones built by Ludwig II – named “Mad King Ludwig” by many.  Mad he may have been, but boy did he know how to build castles!

While Linderhof may have been the smallest of the castles he built, it seemed to me to be the most ornate, and actually somewhat gaudy to me.  Mind you, it is really gorgeous, and has many, many precious things in it, but the word opulent comes to mind when I think of it.

Credit Google Search – an example of gold used

However, we thoroughly enjoyed touring it, and were grateful for the opportunities we had to visit it.  We always made sure to take visitors to see it with us.

Of course, we found the gold statue in the middle of the pool to be fascinating.  She sits demurely most of the time, but when it is time for the fountain to geyser, she is in the middle of the geyser.  

1968 – on our trip to Bavaria

And there is a most interesting thing about that geyser – it is completely natural!  There is nothing mechanical or technical about it.  You see, the castle itself sits at the bottom of a hill, with a cascade carved in the hill behind it, that the water flows over.  The water goes down the cascade, under the castle itself, and gravity pressure makes the geyser shoot up at least 80 feet in the air.  It is amazing!  Ludwig placed his bedroom at that point in the castle to get the cool breeze coming down the hill and with the water to cool his room.  Smart man, hmm?

1968 – the cascade is behind the castle

1982 – the Cascade behind the castle

There is a LOT of gold overlay within the castle.  He also had a lot of Meissen porcelain in various arrangements.  Apparently Meissen porcelain was his favorite.  It is quite ornate and beautiful.

1982 – Meissen porcelain chandelier

Ludwig had a fascination with swans and peacocks.  He had a Moorish Kiosk built on Linderhof grounds that had three peacocks surrounding a divan within.  This kiosk was originally designed for the World Exhibition in Paris in 1876.

Credit Google Search and Wikipedia

We also found fascinating that in the dining room, the table disappears into the floor, going to the kitchen below where it was loaded with food and sent back to the dining room. The advantage of this technology was that the King did not have to see his servants.

Credit Google Search – The dining room

The Kings bed chamber was quite something to see – there is a giant sized bed for a large-than-life King.  Ludwig liked ornate drapes in his bedroom.

Credit Google Search – the King’s bedroom

Ludwig and composer Richard Wagner were friends, and Ludwig built a grotto (a cave) for the performance of Wagner’s “Der Ring des Nibelungen.”  It’s sometimes call “The Blue Grotto” or “Neptune’s Grotto.”

Credit Google Search and Augsburger Allegemeine

~~~~~~~~~~To Be Continued~~~~~~~~~~

Judy is living in Central Florida with her retired U.S. Air Force husband of 50+ years. Born in Dallas, Texas, she grew up in the Southwestern United States.She met her husband at their church, where he was attending the university in her town. After college and seminary, he entered the Air Force, and their adventures began.They lived in eight of our United States, and spent six years in Europe, where their oldest daughter was born. She was a stay-at-home mom for many years .

  Judy has always been involved with music, both playing the piano and singing. Always interested in exercise, she was an aerobic dancing instructor, as well as a piano teacher for many years, and continues to faithfully exercise at home.

After moving to Central Florida, she served as a church secretary for nearly nine years.Her main hobby at this point in time is scanning pictures and 35mm slides into the computer. She also enjoys scrapbooking.She and her husband have two married daughters and four grandchildren, including grandtwins as well as a great-grandson. She and her husband enjoy the Disney parks as often as possible.

Random Memories of German-Pianos and Such

2 Aug

SUNDAY MEMORIES

Judy Wills

I believe I’ve mentioned in previous musings, that I had piano training from the day I started first grade until I graduated from high school.  Unfortunately, that doesn’t mean I was a prodigy.  I believe God gave me a talent for music – and the piano in particular – but I was not given the “gift” of music.  I can play, but I always must have a piece of music in front of me – I am unable to play “by ear” as so many can and do.  I am grateful for what I have, and rejoice with those who have the gift of music, and I enjoy their talents.

But that’s not what this post is about.  There has almost always been a piano in my life.  I grew up with a piano in my house.  I remember always having an old upright piano at home.

1950 – Judy at the old upright piano

Then in 1952, when I was just 11 years old, my parents purchased a new piano.  That’s the one I still have.

1952 – the new piano

1952 – Judy at the new piano

When I went away for college, there wasn’t one.  And when Fred and I married, there was no room in our little apartment for a piano, even if we could have afforded to buy one.

But following the death of my father, my mother re-married after some years, and they moved into an apartment, with no room for the piano.  So I inherited that piano – and it still sits in my living room now.  But it wasn’t until the early 1970’s that I acquired it.

2020 – at home in Orlando, Florida

When Fred and I went to Germany (Wiesbaden) in 1967, we joined a small English-speaking church there.  Soon I was asked to be the church pianist.  And so, after we moved from the economy housing to government quarters, we rented a piano from a company in town.  We were amazed to find that those who brought the piano up three flights of stairs….were two older gentlemen!  They had some sort of straps around their backs, and the end of the straps – in front of them – had a large “hook” at the bottom that fitted under each end of the piano.  We couldn’t believe our eyes when those two men – one on each end of the piano – bent, then lifted – and the piano came up!  They carried that piano those three flights of stairs like it was a walk in the park!!  And two years later, when we left Wiesbaden, they carried it down those same three flights of stairs, like they were carrying something as light as a feather!  No grunts or groans from them!  Amazing!

Ten years later, when we moved to Heidelberg, Germany,

it was during a time when the government was allowing more than 2,000 pounds of household goods to be shipped, so we, essentially, brought our entire household with us.  Well, most of it, anyway.  We knew there would be washers and driers available to us, so we left ours in storage.  However, my piano came with us!  I honestly don’t remember the trip up – once again it was three flights of stairs.

Christmas 1982 – Karen in front of the piano in our quarters

But the trip down, three years later, was something else.  No strong older gentlemen this time, but it took five hefty men with many straps around and under the piano to get it down the stairs.  If you will look at the picture below, you will see large windows at each landing.

Well, on the way down, a couple of the men simply just gave up their jobs and let the piano go to the other three.  It happened on the stairway, not the landing, and I had visions of my piano flying down the rest of the stairs and straight out that landing window – and onto the sidewalk below – smashing into a million pieces! Fortunately, the other three men were strong enough to hold the piano in place until the other two could gather their strength again, and carry the thing the rest of the way down.  Whew!

And one last tidbit about that piano.  It was made by Everett, and instead of a wooden pegboard, it had a metal pegboard.  That made the instrument VERY heavy!  As it was being off-loaded at our new house in Virginia – again with FIVE men carrying it – they

got if off the truck and had to stop and catch their breath!  Then they got it to the bottom of the stairs going into our house.  Again they had to stop.  One of the gentlemen asked: “who plays this thing?”  I replied that both my girls and I did.  He then said, “that’s a good thing, because if this was just a piece of furniture, we would leave it right here!”  Fortunately, they didn’t, and it made it into our living room.

1992 – Seaford, Virginia – Judy and Mom in front of the piano

~~~~~~~~~~To Be Continued~~~~~~~~~~

Judy is living in Central Florida with her retired U.S. Air Force husband of 50+ years. Born in Dallas, Texas, she grew up in the Southwestern United States.She met her husband at their church, where he was attending the university in her town. After college and seminary, he entered the Air Force, and their adventures began.They lived in eight of our United States, and spent six years in Europe, where their oldest daughter was born. She was a stay-at-home mom for many years .

  Judy has always been involved with music, both playing the piano and singing. Always interested in exercise, she was an aerobic dancing instructor, as well as a piano teacher for many years, and continues to faithfully exercise at home.

After moving to Central Florida, she served as a church secretary for nearly nine years.Her main hobby at this point in time is scanning pictures and 35mm slides into the computer. She also enjoys scrapbooking.She and her husband have two married daughters and four grandchildren, including grandtwins as well as a great-grandson. She and her husband enjoy the Disney parks as often as possible.

Random Memories of Germany-The Bakery

26 Jul

SUNDAY MEMORIES

Judy Wills

The symbol for a bakery in Germany – the pretzel – 1982

I’ve mentioned in previous musings about the Bakery that was just around the corner from the housing area where we lived.  I made many trips just to visit that bakery (Bäckerei in German).  I have many fond memories of going into that store and “speaking” with the lady who owned it.  I spoke a little German…she spoke a little English, and so we were able to communicate fairly well with each other.  She was a delightful lady.

One thing I enjoyed the most about her was the way she treated her customers.  For instance, the first year we were in Heidelberg, Fred’s parents came to visit (which they did each year we were there).  Wanting to show them all the wonderful things about Heidelberg, we took them to the bakery.  I introduced them to the owner.  I told her that they really loved to eat raisin bread (Rosinenbrot), and she produced a loaf.  We ate off that loaf for a few days.  But the really fun thing is that every following year, when Fred’s parents visited, and we went to that bakery, she remembered them – greeting them with smiles and handshakes – and presenting a loaf of raisin bread.  She remembered not only the couple, but what they enjoyed eating!  Great lady!

I remember going in there one day in the Spring, and she had set out samples of an onion tart she had made.  Onions grew abundantly in the area, and she made the best of it.  It was a delicious taste – but I can’t remember whether or not I purchased an entire “pie” to take home.  I probably did, because I knew Fred would enjoy it.

Another memory of the bakery – as mentioned in other posts, I had started teaching aerobic dancing while in Heidelberg.  My partner and I had set up a contest among our students, to make a design that depicted our logo.  We had several entries, and chose one top winner,

The winner of our logo

 and one runner-up.  As it happened, I went from one of my classes, still wearing my aerobic outfit, to the bakery before heading home.  The owner of the bakery asked about the shirt (Heidelberg Aerobic Dancing) and I tried to tell her it was an exercise class, but made use of “dance” instead of just exercises.  And so I told her it was “tance…aber….gymnastic” (dance…but…gymnastics).  She seemed to get the idea.  I just hoped I had said it right!

 One of the best memories of the bakery, was what I did for Fred’s birthday, the last one before we left Germany.  I had frequently purchased just slices of her famous cream pie (like a cream cheese pie, lemony flavor and mildly sweet), and other goodies.  One day I was in there, when someone ordered a Black Forest Cake for a birthday.  That gave me the idea for Fred’s birthday.  I was able to order and purchase a small Black Forest Cake (about 8″ diameter), and asked her to write “Fred” on it.  She didn’t understand “Fred” so I said “Frederic.”  She then said “Fritz?” which is the German nickname for Frederick.  I said “nein” and said “Fred.”  A little disgusted with me, she handed me the paper and pen and said “here!”  So I wrote “Fred” out for her, and we were both happy.  Fred was more than surprised, and pleased.  It was a delicious cake!!

When my BFF, Sue, came for a two-week visit, we squired her all around Heidelberg and Germany.  She and I went on a bus tour to Holland – that is a memory for another post.  But one of the things I did with her, was to take her to my favorite bakery!  I spoke to the owner in my halting German, asking for whatever it was I wanted.  After I had finished, Sue said, “Wow, Judy, I never heard anything like that.”  In reply, I said, “believe me… that’s like NOTHING She’s ever heard before either!”  And the lady just laughed.  So she probably knew more English than she let on.  But that’s okay, we got along famously with what we each knew.

One of the things I miss most about Germany, and Heidelberg in particular, is that bakery.  

~~~~~~~~~~To Be Continued~~~~~~~~~~

Judy is living in Central Florida with her retired U.S. Air Force husband of 50+ years. Born in Dallas, Texas, she grew up in the Southwestern United States.She met her husband at their church, where he was attending the university in her town. After college and seminary, he entered the Air Force, and their adventures began.They lived in eight of our United States, and spent six years in Europe, where their oldest daughter was born. She was a stay-at-home mom for many years .

  Judy has always been involved with music, both playing the piano and singing. Always interested in exercise, she was an aerobic dancing instructor, as well as a piano teacher for many years, and continues to faithfully exercise at home.

After moving to Central Florida, she served as a church secretary for nearly nine years.Her main hobby at this point in time is scanning pictures and 35mm slides into the computer. She also enjoys scrapbooking.She and her husband have two married daughters and four grandchildren, including grandtwins as well as a great-grandson. She and her husband enjoy the Disney parks as often as possible.

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